Sunkissed

In summer, my self-care comes in the form of a vintagey swimsuit, the smell of sunscreen and chlorine, and a tequila, lemonade, and soda in a big orange tumbler. Never happier than when air-drying after a quick dip, my new home is not inside the apartment I share with Sam, but on the ratty old lounge chair at the side of our teeny tiny pool. Yesterday, we listened to Pet Sounds and took little forays into the pool as necessitated by the 100 degree heat. Life is good.

But of course, there’s always tweaks to be made and nuances to be learned in every self-care regime. Here’s what I’m up to.

Skin

Y’all gave me some pretty extensive and, in some cases, expensive skincare tips and I followed a few to try to get rid of my dull and sometimes acne-riddled skin. The most important thing I learned is that no one agrees about skincare, and you need to do what’s right for you. My skin clears up in the summertime, and I’ve finally found a system that works for me.

In the morning, I’m washing with Cerave foaming cleanser, recommended to me by skincare genius Megan. I sometimes use a facial brush, maybe once a week. I’ve noticed that this is a great way to lightly exfoliate without causing me to breakout or dry out. I got mine for $20 on Amazon. When I’m done washing, I moisturize my face, neck, and chest with St. Ives Collagen Elastin moisturizer, recommended to me by Lisa and Stefanie. I love this stuff. It’s cheap and I’ve never had a moisturizer that makes me feel soft and hydrated without making me feel greasy. I use Neutrogena Clear Face sunscreen in SPF 55 under my make-up. I top off with Pure BB Cream from Maybelline, which I love because it doesn’t clog my pores and it lightly covers my array of acne scars and lingering, cool, definitely not embarrassing adult acne. It also doesn’t cover what we can all agree are my very adorable freckles.

In the evening, I use a generic Walgreens sensitive skin makeup removing wipe (I only use this when I’m wearing eye make-up, which is just about never these days) and finish off with Simple Micellar Water. I love not having to suds up and throw water at my face at night when I’m winding down, and this stuff is fast, easy, and gets rid of my make-up. I started using a Neutrogena retinol cream at night, but I really hated it. I worry about wrinkles, sure, but not enough to keep using something that felt greasy and heavy when I want to go to bed fresh-faced. I hope one day I’ll get old and pruned up like Georgia O’Keeffe, and I will think fondly of the time I threw a tube of retinol into the bathroom trash. Unpopular decision: I stopped moisturizing at night. This has been a total game-changer for me. I am about 50% less greasy during the day, and this is a dream come true.

Tunes

Carly Rae Jepsen “Cut to the Feeling” and Lorde’s Melodrama – end of list.

Shoes

I finally learned that wearing DSW $40 flats is ruining my dang life. After a third bout of immense foot pain left me unable to walk normally for almost 3 months, my doctor and a shoe salesman brought me into the light. The man said I had “some arches” (sorry to be braggy) and thus a person who spends more than $100 on safe, stable shoes was born. Vionic, I live for you. The only non-supportive pair of shoes I wear are my Target sandals between my bedroom and my office (the pool).

Miscellaneous

The things that are keeping me happy so far this summer (summer starts in March here): my bluetooth speaker to keep the tunes cranking all summer; L’Oreal Kids swim shampoo so I don’t become a bleach-blonde scarecrow; nighttime AND morningtime showers; night swims; nightcaps on the balcony; ceiling fans; rosé spritzers; spin class; bike shorts; swing dresses; big Topo Chicos; Mexican Coca-Cola; and, finally, dogs.

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